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Monthly Archives: August 2009

Dinner as Deafening

If you read my last post about Nuyorican Super Cabbie Iris Javed, you know she’s led a life of extremes. You also know that no ordinary restaurant would satisfy the cravings of this wonder woman behind the wheel. Enter Sofrito – a Midtown East hot spot that’s part salsa club, ...

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The Hack as Hero: Part 2

The Village Voice called her “a driver worthy of a superhero comic book” and voted her the best cab driver in New York in 2004. The New York Observer dubbed her “Iris the Fare.” I call this 39-year-old mother of three – who dressed dolls and drove 18-wheelers before she ...

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The Hack as Hero: Part 1

“And each man stands with his face in the light. Of his own drawn sword, ready to do what a hero can.” – Elizabeth Barrett Browning Color me romantic. Call me an idealist. Accuse me of being overly sentimental. But I dare you not to be amazed when I tell ...

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A Banker Falls and a Cabbie Rises

What’s your idea of a ‘typical’ New York City cabbie? Is it a heavy-set Russian who’s been driving for generations? A jovial Haitian? A Pakistani with a bluetooth clamped to his ear? How about a recently unemployed banker descended from fallen Hungarian nobility? Ladies and gentlemen, meet Michael Dick. Michael ...

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Punjabi Paradise

A port in a storm, an oasis in the desert, a refuge in the urban jungle – Punjabi Grocery & Deli is all of these, plus DVDs, breath mints, Thai soft drinks, Sikh devotionals and marvelously cheap sustenance. 24 hours a day, this standing room only deli/den serves samosas, roti, ...

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Can You Go Home Again?

New York taxi drivers seem to have different answers to this question. For Vinod Dogra, the taxi astrologer from New Delhi who will “always be hyphenated,” and Ilyas Chaudary, the Pakistani cabbie itching to return to Gujrat to grow vegetables, the answer is a resounding yes. But Leslie Destine, who’s ...

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Reader Fare: Sul Lung Tang & Its Formidable Sides

“I don’t think you’ll like this,” the waiter said, “It’s very traditional.” I’d just ordered Sul Lung Tang, a soup made with bone broth, tripe, scallions, noodles and beef that is Korea’s preferred way to tame a hangover. “Have you had it before?” I hadn’t. But after Taxi Gourmet reader ...

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Adventure in Brief: Mr. Chaudary’s Greasy Spoon

Cabbie name: Ilyas Chaudary Where he comes from: Gujrat, Pakistan Currently resides: Brooklyn Years in New York: 22 Years driving a taxi: 10 Pre-yellow taxi vocations: Gypsy cab driver, cook at a Greek restaurant What he misses about Pakistan: Everything. In 2 years, he’ll retire from cab driving, go back ...

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